Upon retiring from his teaching career, Harry Evans quickly discovered that the white cane no longer suited his lifestyle.
In fact, with his deteriorating vision and the often wild weather of Victoria, Harry wondered how he could keep getting out and about safely and independently.
“I would say to myself, ‘Well Harry, this is the day that could be your last one if you’re not on the ball.’”
In light of the increased risks, Harry applied for a Seeing Eye Dog. He was paired with Bateman in September 2019.
Although the outbreak of COVID-19 presented some interesting challenges for them, it hasn’t stopped them from developing an incredible bond.
“He is the most amazing dog,” Harry said. “He’s so good at his work and everything he does.”
Caption: Harry, left, with his family and Bateman.
Harry and Bateman have been a team for nearly three years. In that time, Harry’s confidence and sense of freedom have grown in leaps and bounds.
“I didn’t really understand the freedom I would feel,” Harry said. He’s a first-time SED handler, and the increased independence Bateman provided was a surprise to him.
“That level of freedom is just amazing.”
Harry’s partnership with Bateman has allowed him to meet new people, to explore his community, and to expand his activities beyond the familiar confines of his local area.
“Bateman allows me to confidently do that.
“I wouldn’t have been able to confidently do that in the past.”
Bateman seems to love working with Harry just as much.
“It doesn’t matter what I’m doing,” Harry explained, “Bateman always wants to be a part of it. If it involves getting up and going out and doing something, he’s ready to go.
“Having a Seeing Eye Dog is lifechanging.”
Could a Seeing Eye Dog support you? Find out more here.
Could you help train a Seeing Eye Dog like Bateman? Learn about puppy caring with Seeing Eye Dogs.